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CNN uses Fallout 4 screenshot in report on Russian hacking

Russian hackers most likely did not use Pip-Boys to disrupt the US presidential election.

CNN used this shot of Fallout 4 to show what hacking looks like.
CNN (Screenshot by Alfred Ng/CNET)

We're not living in a post-apocalyptic nuclear shelter in the year 2287, but the news sure makes it seem like we're inside Fallout 4.

In a CNN report on Russian hacking, first posted December 30 and updated Monday night, the news network used a screenshot from the popular Bethesda game as B-roll footage to demonstrate what hacking looks like.

The two-second shot might have resembled a cyberattack, but to eagle-eyed Fallout 4 fans, it was pretty obvious where the random characters came from.


Fallout 4 features a hacking mini-game.

YouTube (Screenshot by Alfred Ng/CNET)

The gaming screengrab was first spotted by a Redditor on r/fo4, the Fallout 4 subreddit. CNN did not respond to requests for comment.

The clip used a scrolling video of a computer in Fallout 4, which features bright green text against a black background. CNN has since replaced the clip on its website, but it's still up on CNN's YouTube channel.

The shot comes from Fallout 4's hacking mini-game, which players tackle to unlock doors and get further in the game. It's unlikely that Russian hackers used a Pip-Boy to leak emails.

US intelligence officials have begun releasing details of the real-life cyberattack dubbed "Grizzly Steppe," which used phishing techniques to penetrate email servers tied to the 2016 US presidential campaign.